Monday, July 13, 2009

Maintenance at Miramonte Trovas Apartments

Our apartment at Miramonte & Trovas, while recently built, has a moisture issue for reasons we have yet to understand. We have been told (and have tried) to open our windows, run our air conditioner more often, and basically "do it yourselves" to get rid of the moisture problem.

Well, we've finally had it with the maintenance here, and that is why we're moving.

When we walk into our apartment, it feels damp and muggy. There is a smell about the air--a musky smell. We generally sneeze and sometimes cough upon entry. Our eyes become irritated. Sometimes one sneeze turns into a sneezing fit that goes on a good 5 or 6 sneezes. We have no pets. Our doors have been closed all day. We're not allergic to anything inside our apartment--except the mold.

You see, the moisture problem has led to a mold problem, which management here at Miramonte Trovas doesn't seem to care about "unless there's staining or the bathroom walls are bubbling, because they're designed to do that when there's mold." Basically: unless you've got a full-blown mold outbreak from a leaky pipe and your wall or cupboard is mushy or falling apart, they could care less about your plight and give you the old "there's nothing we can do" attitude.

That's not team spirit. And certainly not representative of the way they feel about their tenants, right?

Wrong. We've been given lots of advice about how to stop the mold from growing... such sage advice as, "leave your windows open while you're gone during the day." Yeah, that makes a lot of sense, given that we're on the first floor. Oh, and then there was the obvious one: "you know, just keep your windows open... even when it's raining outside... I know it's tough, but that'll help keep the air flowing." Are you kidding me?

And then there was this: "78 degrees is a little warm for an apartment while you're gone all day... how about 70?" Wait, isn't the whole point of air conditioning to keep the place nice and comfortable while you're home? While we're at work, there's no point to keep the house at 70 degrees. 78 has been fine at every place we've lived in before.

Our conclusion: this specific unit has some kind of ventilation problem, but nobody wants to do anything about it and make it right. The manager even went so far as to say that all of the apartments have this moisture problem because of their "low ceilings" and the apartments being "on top of one another."

Excuse me, but aren't all multi-level apartments on top of each other? Oh, and by the way, in what world do "

And those mold home test kits? Don't even bother. According to our management here, you could set the petri dish outside and get the same results as what we got inside, which was nasty. So the mold test kits are worthless.

So, management offered to send out a ventilation expert, and see if there was something wrong with the apartment's ventilation system. Note I said system, not just a couple of fans. But you can guess what happened by now. No system was checked--just two fans. One in the bathroom, the other in the kitchen.

Here's the video below, complete with transcription based on what I could hear. The man in blue is our maintenance guy. The man in red is the ventilation expert. Mind you, these guys are supposed to try and figure out why our apartment is always so moist. Could be anything. Bathroom fan, laundry room fan, HVAC ductwork... and here's what they spent their time on. (Skip to 3:00 for entry into apartment.)


Blue: "Hello, Maintenance!"

Red: "Not the best location for one of those, that's for sure." "...ceiling..."

Blue: "They're all like that though."

Red: "Ah."

Red: "and then there's somethin about the kitchen fan, too--from what I was told."

Blue: "It's a recycler, there's uh--uh, there's no exhaust... they think it goes up to uh..."

Red: "Maybe that's what she's trippin about."

Blue: "What?"

Red: "The fact that there's no exhaust and she doesn't understand that."

Blue: "Oh yeah, duh"

Red: "It's smokin, and it's blowin out there."

Blue: "Yeah, they're weird dude."

Red: "Oh really?"

Blue: "Yeah, they give me the weirdest shit dude, like... I dunno, she's allergic to hot air or some shit."

Red: "Hot air?"

Blue: "And then she had something uhm, ... I just fixed her fucking doors or something."

Red: "Okay."

Blue: "Kinda weird people."

I dunno, I'm just drivin up here to check the fans, and it looks like all conditions are clean.